A bill moving through the state legislature would make it more difficult for parents in Connecticut to opt-out of vaccinating their children and parents have mixed reactions to the proposal.
Schools require students to be vaccinated and the current plan in place allows parents to sign a form to allow children to enter school without the immunizations. Parents can also opt-out of children being vaccinated for religious reasons.
The bill that passed the house and is heading to the state senate changes the rules, making it more difficult to opt-out, and would require parents not only to sign a new form every year, but also to have it authorized by someone like a lawyer or a notary public.
Residents have mixed reactions.
“Everyone should be vaccinated for everything. I believe in it,” Florence Rondini, of New Britain, said.
While Grace Cloutier, of New Britain, said freedom of choice is very important.
“That’s what this country was founded upon,” she said.
“You’re making a decision, obviously, for your own child, but it affects all the children around,” Melissa Lewis, mother of 2-year-old Cameron, said. “We’ve had measles outbreaks.”
Only two states --- Mississippi and West Virginia -- do not allow parents to opt out of vaccination requirements for religious reasons and lawmakers said the proposed bill would not eliminate that in Connecticut.